This park honors New York veteran John Fraser Bryan (1885-1918). Bryan, a member of the United States’ Allied Expeditionary Force (A.E.F.), lost his life in the Meuse-Argonne offensive of World War I (1914-1918). Named for the Argonne Forest and the Meuse River, where the trench lines were drawn across southern France, the offensive action began on September 26, 1918 and continued successfully forward until the Central Powers surrendered and the signing of the Armistice put an end to the conflict on November 11 of that year. Of the 116,000 American soldiers who perished in the war, 26,777 were lost in this action.
The City acquired this site, an island at the intersection of East Fordham Road, East Kingsbridge Road, and Bainbridge Avenue, for street purposes on November 1, 1913. The Board of Aldermen (predecessor of the City Council) named the park, which was dedicated on June 21, 1933. It features a sitting area with benches, a three-banner flagpole with a yardarm, and a planting area surrounded by a cobblestone retaining wall. Local residents use the sitting area to wait for the bus on the Fordham Road side of the park.
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